Jun 2, 2020

National Lottery operator warns UK recession threatens charity funding

The UK's National Lottery operator has warned that the looming recession is likely to hit sales, which would result in a fall in the amount of money distributed to charities and good causes. Nigel Railton, chief executive of Camelot, which runs the National Lottery, said that the biggest challenge for the lottery was "Where the economy goes". The OBR has also forecast that total expenditure from National Lottery grants will decrease from £1.3bn this year to £900m in 2024. "Gambling spend tends to correlate with GDP so you would expect the lottery to trend down," said Simon French, a partner at the consultancy Bixteth Partners. It also increased the amount of money it distributed to good causes by 12 per cent to £1.85bn. The lottery operator said that since the lockdown on March 23 retail sales had fallen as shopkeepers questioned whether lottery tickets were part of an "Essential shop" and became more wary of selling scratch cards and tickets that needed to be passed between customer and cashier in order to be processed.

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